WeCompare: The Most Frequently Asked Questions About Broadband

May 20 . 8 m

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Your Broadband Questions Answered

Broadband can be mind-boggling and has been known to drive the odd (albeit impatient) person into a frenzy. In fact, did you know that the number one ranking question on Goggle is “what is my IP”? With more than 3,350,000 people searching it globally every month, it’s evident that people have questions about the internet. So, WeCompare is here to answer broadband’s most frequently asked questions. Furthermore, we will outline everything you need to know about choosing a broadband plan in Ireland so you can shop with confidence.

Broadband FAQs

What’s an IP Address?

Let’s begin with the most popular! IP is an abbreviation of Internet Protocol. Your IP address is assigned to you by your broadband provider and allows your devices to send and receive information over the internet.

How can I find my IP Address?

Typically, you can find your IP address under the router with the username and password. If you are unable to locate it, follow these steps:

  1. Open your command prompt. You can do this by typing cmd into windows search and clicking on the command prompt application.
  2. Once open, type ipconfig and press enter.
  3. Look through the results and find your default gateway. This is your router’s IP address.

How can I Find out if High-Speed Broadband is Available in my Area?

By entering your eircode on the government website, you can find out when high-speed broadband will be rolled out in your area. It is updated quarterly with those new towns added by commercial providers or the State on the National Broadband Plan Map.

Can I get Broadband Without a Landline?

Absolutely! You no longer need to get a landline to get an internet connection. You can browse all of our broadband-only plans right here!

What is the Average Broadband Speed in Ireland?

Ireland’s average mobile broadband speed is 42.37Mbps, with an upload speed of 11.38Mbps. Currently, we hold the 52nd spot in the world.

While some of Ireland’s broadband providers offer speeds up to 1000Mbps, they aren’t available everywhere. Just enter your eircode here, and we will show you all the best offers available to you.

What is the Fastest Broadband Speed Available in Ireland?

If you are looking for the fastest broadband plans in Ireland, look no further! Leading Irish broadband providers eir, Vodafone, Pure Telecom, Sky, and Virgin Media all offer fibre-powered gigabit speeds. That’s download speeds up to 1000Mbps! You can choose from broadband-only gigabit plans¬†or bundle your broadband with a landline and TV plan for even bigger savings!

What is SIRO?

Siro is our nation’s first fibre-to-the-home broadband network. The need for a high-speed and reliable broadband service inspired a strategic partnership between ESB and Vodafone. By utilizing the existing electricity infrastructure, they are able to deliver gigabit speeds directly to the home.

What is an Acceptable Broadband Speed?

It’s a popular broadband question, and it really depends on the size of the household. High-speed broadband plans benefit large families and remote workers. No one wants to be interrupted during a zoom call because someone else is bingeing on the latest Netflix series or gaming online. Faster download speeds allow for seamless streaming on multiple devices while eliminating buffering.

An acceptable broadband speed is between 50 – 100Mbps. The best broadband speed for a small family of average users is between 100 – 200Mbps. For larger families, remote workers, gamers, vloggers, or creative types, we recommend download speeds upwards of 500Mbps.

For more on the best broadband plans for large families, click here.

How is Broadband Speed Measured?

Broadband speed is measured in Mbps or megabits per second. It refers to the rate at which data is uploaded and downloaded between the internet and your device. In Ireland, most internet service providers will promote their download speeds in their packages.

When opening a webpage or streaming movies, the time it takes to download the content to your device represents the download speed. Contrarily, the upload speed, which is often set to one-tenth of the download speed, measures the time that it takes to send an email with a large attachment or upload audio and video when video calling.

If you are unsure of your internet speed, take our free broadband speed test now.

How do I Know Which Broadband Plan to Choose?

Only you can choose the right broadband for your household’s needs. But, here is a list of things that you should consider before making your choice:

  • Contract duration: Some contracts are for 12-months, and some for 18-months, which renew automatically, so be sure to note the details.
  • Speed: Are you a light user, average user, or heavy user? Do you work from home or have a large family who is technology-obsessed? All of these factors should help direct you to the speed required for a happy household.
  • Cost: Most broadband providers in Ireland have great introductory offers, and while some are for the first year, others are for the first six months. So, always pay attention to the first year’s total cost before making your final decision.
  • Unlimited plans: Thankfully, the Irish broadband plans that we compare have unlimited data. But, if you are using another site to switch providers, be sure that you get enough data to satisfy your needs.

Are Unlimited Broadband Plans Really Unlimited?

Choosing a broadband plan with unlimited data is essential if you are a heavy internet user or live in a large household. If you are a gamer, download movies or music, and stream content from platforms like Netflix or Amazon Prime, then an unlimited broadband plan is right for you.

What is a Fair Usage Policy?

A fair usage policy, or FUP, is a data limit imposed by your Internet Service Provider. The provider has these limits to ensure that the speeds on their network won’t be affected by over-usage. If you go over the limit, then you may be subject to additional charges.

Why Should I Switch Broadband Providers?

Firstly, you should look at switching broadband providers on an annual basis. Eventually, those introductory offers that hooked you will end, and since saving money is always at the top of our to-do lists- it’s good to re-evaluate.

Next, as our families grow or our circumstances change, so do our needs. This past year has been a prime example of this change. The lockdown meant remote working, online learning, and spending more time on our devices than ever. As a result, the need for faster broadband speed and larger download limits to support the change was essential.

Lastly, and the driving force between the majority of those people switching providers is the desire for better customer service.

For those who are fearful of the time and energy that goes into switching, don’t worry! Think of WeCompare as a one-stop broadband shop. It’s like going to a supermarket, as opposed to a fruit market, a butcher, and a bakery. We bring you the best deals on broadband, home phones, TV, and mobile plans from Ireland’s top providers.

What is the Difference Between Broadband and Bandwidth?

Many people assume broadband and bandwidth are the same things, and the terms are often used interchangeably. However, they do mean different things. Your broadband speed will measure the time it takes for data to travel between the internet and your device. Bandwidth refers to the volume of data that can move through the network during a set amount of time.

Why do Broadband Speeds Vary from the Speeds Advertised?

FTTC BroadbandInternet service providers promote their plans with the maximum possible speed for that package. Depending on the distance between your home and the exchange, the speed can be affected. Thus, the further from the exchange, the slower the speed. If this is the case, try moving your router to a different location or test out some of our other tips to help improve your broadband speed.

The type of connection that you have can also affect the speed that you receive. For those with a fibre to the home connection (FTTH), you can expect a better performance than those households connecting through copper wire systems.

Can I Improve my Broadband Speed?

There are a few easy steps to help improve your broadband speed. First, whenever possible, we recommend connecting with an ethernet cable. It is because wired connections will always provide a faster and more stable signal. If using a cabled connection isn’t possible, try a few tips from our list below and see if your speed improves!

  • Clear your cache and cookies
  • Reboot your router
  • Run a virus scan
  • Change the position of your router
  • Keep the router away from electronic devices such as mobile phones or microwaves.
  • Switch your Wi-Fi channel from 2.4GHz to 5GHz
  • Replace your router

When all else fails, consider an upgrade! You may have outgrown your broadband plan. Consider a fibre to the home broadband plan, or FTTH, as it’s the fastest connection available.

How Fast is Your Broadband?

Take our SpeedTest and compare your results to those around you! Moreover, you will get an idea of some similar packages that are available to you.


Being informed is the key to choosing a broadband plan confidence. Using a trustworthy and impartial website like WeCompare will help too! We gather the best broadband deals in Ireland and bring them to one convenient location to save you time and money.

So, what are you waiting for?


Zoe Theofilou